Finding the Flavor: Sylva’s burgeoning culinary scene
 

Finding the Flavor: Sylva’s burgeoning culinary scene

One gets hungry strolling downtown Sylva these days. For a town of around 2,600 residents, there sure are a lot of…
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Carolina Chills
 

Carolina Chills

As the leaves change and the air becomes crisp, the mountains of Western North Carolina transform into a landscape of…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

I got it. Growing up outside of Burlington, Vermont, I came out of the womb with a Phish album in-hand. Founded…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

It’s my favorite time of the year. There is nothing like fall. To me, this season isn’t about pumpkin lattes, pumpkin…
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A Unique Touch: Pincu Pottery combines nature, art
 

A Unique Touch: Pincu Pottery combines nature, art

About halfway between Bryson City and the Nantahala Outdoor Center, a small, unassuming building sits alongside the road. The structure…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

It’s about chipping away. When you come into this world, you’re a block of unknown potential. Untouched and ready to be…
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The Road to Bean Blossom: Raymond Fairchild enters Bluegrass Hall of Fame
 

The Road to Bean Blossom: Raymond Fairchild enters Bluegrass Hall of Fame

Heading north on State Road 135, just outside the small town of Nashville, Indiana, the stretch of pavement curves along…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

He sat two seats up from me. In seventh grade advanced algebra class, Tom Pearo was your typical late-1990s kid. A…
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Bringing It Back Home: Local acts win big at IBMAs
 

Bringing It Back Home: Local acts win big at IBMAs

It was another banner year for Western North Carolina bluegrass acts at the International Bluegrass Music Association awards in Raleigh…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

So, you’re Canadian? Not quite, y’all. During my three years living here in Western North Carolina, I’ve lost count of…
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The Tale of Two Bands
 

The Tale of Two Bands

Variety is the spice of life. Within the realm of music, those spices can range from the hot heat of New…
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Molding a passion
 

Molding a passion

Standing in her Dillsboro studio, potter Zan Barnes can’t help but smile. “If you told me in high school that this…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

The blazing Knoxville sun was quickly falling to the west, heading further down the road to Memphis and points beyond.…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

I just wanted to break 18 minutes. Taking a seat in Ms. Trudeau’s second period social studies class, all I had…
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Climbing the Mountain: Following ‘America’s Got Talent’ appearance, Mountain Faith looks to the future
 

Climbing the Mountain: Following ‘America’s Got Talent’ appearance, Mountain Faith looks to the future

Standing behind the counter of High Country Tire, Summer McMahan is a long way from the bright lights of New…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

It’s funny, isn’t it? When you cross paths with folks you haven’t seen in years, and yet you are all still…
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Three’s Company: Sylva welcomes third craft brewery
 

Three’s Company: Sylva welcomes third craft brewery

John Duncan won’t forget Aug. 19 anytime soon. “It was damn scary,” he chuckled. That day not only marked the…
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Proud past, progressive future: Canton Labor Day celebrates 109 years
 

Proud past, progressive future: Canton Labor Day celebrates 109 years

It is the heartbeat of a town and its people. While some communities pride themselves on their Christmas, 4th of…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

With the cornfields as high as an elephant’s eye, apples just ripe for the pickin’ and the last of the…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

It was the line in the sand. During the summer of 2005, I left one existence and embraced another. In a…
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In Search of the Song: The 45th annual Smoky Mountain Folk Festival
 

In Search of the Song: The 45th annual Smoky Mountain Folk Festival

Mountain music, dancing and tradition will be on display once again as the 45th annual Smoky Mountain Folk Festival celebrates…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

My eyes fluttered open and, for a moment, I didn’t know where I was. The room was familiar. The sheets…
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The Road to Rock — The Freeway Revival
 

The Road to Rock — The Freeway Revival

Manic, menacing and mesmerizing. That’s how rock-n-roll is supposed to make you feel. It’s meant to be a bit jarring,…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

I rolled the windows down and stuck my head out. The air was crisp and salty, with a slight hint of…
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Onstage at WCU
 

Onstage at WCU

Galaxy of Stars offers a variety of entertainment  A tribute to a comedic icon, a holiday show featuring the “Redneck…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

It’s the only place I feel at home. The open road. Once it gets into your system, you’ll spend the rest…
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All’s fair in beer and lore
 

All’s fair in beer and lore

Is Stacy J. Cox disliked by Western North Carolina craft beer lovers? “I think so, but I don’t know why,”…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

I stopped going. For the better part of the last decade, my life during the summer was music festivals. From…
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The Art of Faking It: Lip sync contests popular in Franklin
 

The Art of Faking It: Lip sync contests popular in Franklin

Sitting at a table at the Rathskeller Coffee Haus & Pub, Brittney Raby knows exactly what’s going to walk through…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

Often times as a journalist, you just simply can’t get to everything.
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Strength in numbers: Sylva music scene pushes forward
 

Strength in numbers: Sylva music scene pushes forward

Covered in paint speckles, Drew Duncan walked into O’Malley’s Pub & Grill on a recent Thursday evening. Finishing up work…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

My dog died. Not to be Debbie Downer or anything, but that sentence has been ricocheting around my head all…
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When a vision comes to life: Filmed in Haywood, ‘Chasing Grace’ hits the big screen
 

When a vision comes to life: Filmed in Haywood, ‘Chasing Grace’ hits the big screen

I was a little apprehensive. Strolling into The Strand at 38 Main this past Friday evening, the buzz around downtown…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

Standing on the edge of the cliff, I knew what I had to do. Fifty feet above Fort Loudoun Lake in…
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Cherokee Friends — Teaching new visitors old traditions
 

Cherokee Friends — Teaching new visitors old traditions

By Wil Shelton • SMN intern Visitors of the Qualla Boundary now have the opportunity to experience Cherokee culture in a…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

Y’all are doing it wrong. You know, that thing? Social media? What happened? How did the endless fun and unlimited…
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Blurred Lines: Life comes full circle  for Ricky Skaggs
 

Blurred Lines: Life comes full circle for Ricky Skaggs

Are your ears playing tricks on you? As you turn the radio dial to a country music station these days,…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

I fixed my hair in the rearview mirror and exited the truck. Heading up the steps, I was already five…
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The Art of Preservation: Stecoah Valley Center bridges past, present
 

The Art of Preservation: Stecoah Valley Center bridges past, present

Heading down N.C. 28, between Bryson City and Robbinsville, is a flat stretch of highway, unusual to the continuous curves…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

There is a lot of truth to it. “Money can’t buy happiness,” the old adage goes. It’s a sentiment that…
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A world of art in your backyard
 

A world of art in your backyard

Coming into its fourth year, Cullowhee Mountain ARTS has grown into a vast array of workshops, one that seamlessly brings…
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Everything but the kitchen sink: A conversation with Frank Solivan
 

Everything but the kitchen sink: A conversation with Frank Solivan

He stood out like a sore thumb. Standing on the red carpet at the International Bluegrass Music Association awards in…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

Part Two: The Wedding As I adjusted my tie in the hotel mirror, I noticed more grey hairs in my beard.
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It’s good to be the queen: A conversation with Rhonda Vincent
 

It’s good to be the queen: A conversation with Rhonda Vincent

In art, as in life, what matters most is following your heart, never compromising your beliefs and holding steady to…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

Part One: The Ride It had been eight years to the day. Putting the car into park, I emerged from the…
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If you build it, they will come: Franklin welcomes first craft brewery
 

If you build it, they will come: Franklin welcomes first craft brewery

Cruising through downtown Franklin, one begins to wonder where exactly is the Lazy Hiker Brewing Company. You’ve been told it’s…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

They are my brothers. Well, in terms of genetics, they technically aren’t. But, when it comes to heart and soul,…
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From the street to the stage — Productive Paranoia
 

From the street to the stage — Productive Paranoia

Turning the corner at Church and Main streets in downtown Waynesville, I saw them out of the corner of my…
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This must be the place
 

This must be the place

So, what’s it like out there? That was a recent question posed to me by an older friend, one who…
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Over the hills and far away: Folk School bridges the essence of humanity
 

Over the hills and far away: Folk School bridges the essence of humanity

Taking a left off U.S. 64 onto Settawig Road in rural Clay County, the busy commercial thoroughfare transforms into lush…
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